Has anyone else seen one of the pictures in Newsweek from this week? It is a double paged spread of a crowd on a street of Pakistan. The crowd seems to be all men and boys, although there may be one veiled woman in the back, that figure is blurry and hard to see. They are walking down the street, wearing dusty sandals and a mix of traditional clothing and western jeans and t-shirt, with stones clutched in their hands. Some of them are shouting and screaming, one boy in the front has a face that is twisted in anger as he pulls his stone back to throw. They are protesting, supposedly, that stupid movie.
It just makes me feel a host of things. Sadness that the world is filled with so much hate. Anger that this group of people is out there having anti-American demonstrations, shouting "Death to America," for reasons that don't justify that kind of xenophobia. Frustration that in this day and age we still understand each other so little.
The same magazine has an article where a Western journalist spends a week with a Saudi woman who rarely leaves her home, has never spoken with a man who is not in her family, and is proud that her whole life is about pleasing her husband and raising her kids to support the exact status quo. She wants her daughters to grow up to have a life as limited as hers is. I cannot understand that at all, so I guess the lack of understanding goes both ways.
I am a news junkie. I listen to NPR, read websites, and try to keep up with what is happening in the world. Sometimes though, I think I should cut myself off from it all. The knowing doesn't make me any happier. It just makes me mad, and scared, and frustrated. And it makes me feel so small and powerless.